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Jeff Halper (born 1946 in Minnesota) is an anthropologist, author, lecturer, political activist, and co-founder and Coordinator of the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions (ICAHD). In 1997, Halper co-founded ICAHD to challenge and resist the Israeli policy of demolishing Palestinian homes in the Occupied Territories, and to organize Israelis, Palestinians and international volunteers to jointly rebuild demolished Palestinian homes. He has created a new mode of Israeli peace activity based on nonviolent direct action and civil disobedience in the Occupied Territories. Dr. Halper was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize by the American Friends Service Committee for his work "to liberate both the Palestinian and the Israeli people from the yoke of structural violence" and "to build equality between their people by recognizing and celebrating their common humanity."
Halper is the author of several books on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and is a frequent writer and speaker about Israeli politics, focusing mainly on nonviolent strategies to solve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
 Early career
Halper was an outside lecturer anthropology at the University of Haifa and Ben Gurion University in Beer Sheva. His academic research focused on the history of Jerusalem in the modern era, contemporary Israeli culture, and the Middle East conflict. In addition to teaching and research, Dr. Halper was active on issues of social justice within Israel. He worked as a community volunteer for ten years in Jerusalemâ’s inner city neighborhoods, and was one of the founders of Ohel - a social protest movement of working-class Mizrahi Jews. He served as the Chairman of the Israeli Association for Ethiopian Jews, having been active on issues concerning the rights of Ethiopian Jews and researching the community in Ethiopia in the mid-1960s.
 Founding of ICAHD
In 1997, Halper co-founded the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions to challenge and resist government policy of demolishing Palestinian homes in the disputed territories. According to ICAHD, since 1967 more than 18,000 Palestinian homes in the Disputed Territories have been destroyed by the Israeli military or civil authorities. According to Professor Halper, 5 percent of home demolitions have to do with security. Some of the demolished homes are on Palestinian private property. Halper says Israel employs various means to prevent normal living conditions for the Palestinians, including land expropriation, discriminatory planning and zoning policies, restrictive granting of building permits and the demolition of Palestinian homes. The reason for this, according to Halper, is purely political: to confine more than three million residents in the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza to small, impoverished and disconnected enclaves, rather than security for Israeli citizens.
As ICAHD’s Coordinating Director, Professor Halper has organized and led direct action and unlawful disobedience against Israelâ’s policies and authorities. He has faced bulldozers in front of Palestinian homes. He also organizes Palestinians, and internationals to help rebuild demolished Palestinian homes. On April 3, 2008, Professor Halper was arrested for the eighth time while protesting the bulldozing of a home in a Palestinian neighborhood.
Typically, ICAHD will get a call at 5 a.m. from a Palestinian family telling them the bulldozers have arrived. ICAHD sends out an action alert and activists from different groups go out and engage in civil disobedience by standing up to the bulldozers. ICAHD also raises funds to rebuild these homes right where they had been before. 
Under Halper's leadership, ICAHD uses dialogue between groups to open communication, foster reconciliation and challenge stereotypes. The ICAHD does nothing to help Jewish citizens whose houses are demolished in the territories by the IDF. In acts of political resistance, ICAHD works in coalition with a wide range of Israeli human rights organizations including: Bat Shalom, Rabbis for Human Rights, Gush Shalom and the Alternative Information Center, as well as Palestinian groups such as the Land Defense Committee, the Palestinian Agricultural Relief Committee (PARC) and Rapprochement.
 Published books
 Selected published articles
 See also
Related topics in the Connexions Subject Index
Arab/Israeli Issues –
Home Demolitions –
Israeli Apartheid (Hafrada) –
Israeli Occupation Forces –
Israeli Settlements –
Israeli War Crimes –
Occupied Territories –
Arab/Israeli Issues – Gaza – History/Israeli – Home Demolitions – Israel – Israeli Apartheid (Hafrada) – Israeli Occupation Forces – Israeli Settlements – Israeli War Crimes – Nakba – Occupied Territories – Palestine – Palestine/Occupation – West Bank
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